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From International Organizations to Democratic Consolidation

From International Organizations to Democratic Consolidation

(p.42) Chapter Three From International Organizations to Democratic Consolidation
Organizing Democracy
Paul PoastJohannes Urpelainen
University of Chicago Press

This chapter continues our theoretical exploration of the link between democracy and international organization membership. The chapter elaborates on the exact mechanisms by which IOs can and cannot assist democratic consolidation. In doing so, the discussion in this chapter links back to the previous chapter. Understanding the role of IOs in assisting a democratic transition requires understanding the processes by which the democratizing state became an IO member in the first place. The chapter begins by discussing the meaning of democratic consolidation and the influence of domestic conditions on the prospects for successful consolidation. The chapter then argues that the inability of IOs to directly enforce policy is not a reason to discount their importance for democratic consolidation. The chapter details the benefits of IOs for achieving democratic consolidation and connects the challenges of public good provision and governance with the imperative of consolidating democracy. Finally, the chapter links our discussions of domestic political context and IO benefits by considering how a history of military rule can modify the relationship between IO membership and democratic consolidation.

Keywords:   consolidation, public good provision, civil-military relations, coups, incumbent takeovers

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